A delicious classic of Moroccan cuisine, chicken pastilla is traditionally cooked with eggs and almonds, with filo or brick leaves, saffron, cinnamon, parsley and butter. Its preparation requires a little (even a lot) of patience, but it is such a festive meal that it would be a shame to deprive yourself of it. So, when are we having fun?
Prep time: 45 MINUTES
Cook time: 1H30 MINUTES
Total time: 2H15 MINUTES
- 1 chicken of about 1.5 kg
- 1 kg of onions
- 8 eggs
- 500g shelled almonds
- 200g caster sugar
- 4 tbsp. vegetable oil
- 5 cl frying oil
- 1 C. salt
- 1/2 tsp. pepper
- 1/2 tsp. cinnamon
- 1 C. coffee saffron coloring
- 1 liter of water
- 4 sprigs of flat-leaf parsley
- 2 tbsp. orange blossom water
For the leaves:
- 500 g large-format filo sheets
- 200g butter
- 1 egg yolk
- 2 tbsp. honey
- 1 C. cinnamon coffee
- 1 C. icing sugar
1. Start by preparing the chicken. Peel and slice the onions, then put them in a large pot or casserole dish, with the oil, salt, cinnamon, pepper, and saffron. Brown the whole chicken for a few minutes over high heat, so that it is seared on all sides.
2. Then sprinkle with water, bring to a boil, then cover and simmer over low heat for 30 minutes, adding the chopped flat-leaf parsley during the last minutes of cooking. Place the chicken on a board, detach the thighs, wings, and breasts from the carcass, and leave to cool.
3. In the casserole, still on low heat, pour the whole eggs one by one, while stirring well, so as to give consistency to the mixture. Wait until the cooking water has completely evaporated before stopping cooking.
4. During the end of the cooking of the egg filling, heat the frying oil in a frying pan, fry the blanched almonds until they are golden brown, then drain them on absorbent paper. While they cool, fray between your fingers the flesh of the chicken pieces as well as that remained on its carcass and put them in a salad bowl.
5. Then put the almonds in the bowl of a food processor, and coarsely chop them (not powder, therefore) with the sugar, then flavor them with the orange blossom water. Save 2-3 tbsp. aside for the final decoration.
6. When your filling is ready, preheat the oven to 180°C (th.6) and melt the butter, then brush a baking sheet with it. Then arrange a first series of 5 sheets of filo so that they protrude about 10 cm from the edges of the plate. Brush them also with melted butter, then place on top, in the middle of the plate, a 6th sheet serving to contain the filling.
7. Then garnish the entire plate with the egg and onion mixture, then add the shredded chicken pieces on top. Drizzle with melted butter, then sprinkle with chopped almonds. To finish, fold the sheets over the stuffing, brush them with butter, then place a last sheet of filo on top of the pastilla (coated with egg yolk on both sides), in order to seal the edges and hide the folds.
8. Brush a final layer of melted butter, then bake for about 30 minutes, until the pastilla takes on a golden color. Serve the pastilla drizzled with honey and sprinkled with almonds, icing sugar, and cinnamon.